Dec 6, 2018

Liberty Health latest pot company targeted by short sellers


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Liberty Health Sciences Inc. is the next cannabis company in the sights of short sellers Hindenberg Research, which says in a new report that the Florida-focused company is part of the same “web of highly questionable deals,” that led it to short Aphria Inc.

  • Hindenburg said its examination of Aphria (APHA.TO) led it to Liberty Health, where it "uncovered multiple irregularities that raise more questions around believed undisclosed insider self-dealing"
  • Liberty Health didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment
  • Report says Liberty Health paid $13.5 million for real estate from a private entity controlled by Andy DeFrancesco, which had bought it six days earlier for $8.5 million
  • DeFrancesco is chairman of SOL Global Investments Corp. and mentioned in earlier short report by Hindenburg and Quintessential Capital Management, which alleges shell companies linked to DeFrancesco sold assets to SOL which sold them on to Aphria at "inflated" prices
  • Aphria CEO Vic Neufeld is also chairman of Liberty Health and holds shares in the company
  • Liberty Health (LHS.CD) shares fell as much as 8.5 per cent, then rebounded, trading up 2.4 per cent to 84 cents at 2:20 p.m. in Toronto; Aphria shares were up 30 per cent.